Should a public authority disclose information originating from another organisation?
The appellant filed three applications under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Union Public Services Commission (UPSC) seeking information about the post of nautical surveyor and the interview conducted by the UPSC in this regard. The Public Information Officer (PIO) denied the information stating that that the interview process was not yet complete or that the information should be obtained from the office of the DG Shipping as the original letters have been issued by them.
View of CIC
The Central Information Commission (CIC) observed that much of the desired information should be disclosed as these were not covered any of the exemption provisions of the RTI Act. The Commission also held that any public authority which holds the information irrespective of the source of the information is obliged to disclose the information when demanded. The CIC also noted that in the RTI Act, it is not provided that a citizen must seek the information from the original source only. The Commission directed the PIO to provide the information to the appellant.
In similar cases, the PIO should consider seeking the views of the other public authority under section 11 treating it as a third party or transfer the application to them.
Citation: Mr. Manoj Arya v. Union Public Services Commission in File No.CIC/SM/A/2012/000517, 808 & 940
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/866
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission